[MARMAM] New paper: Guiana dolphin social network

Mauricio Cantor mauricio.cantor at ymail.com
Tue Jul 24 04:03:13 PDT 2012


Dear colleagues,

I am pleased to inform the publication of our recent work:

Cantor M, Wedekin LL, Guimarães Jr PR, Daura-Jorge FG, Rossi-Santos MR,
Simões-Lopes PC. in press.
Disentangling social networks from spatiotemporal dynamics: the temporal
structure of a dolphin society.
Animal Behaviour  dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.anbehav.2012.06.019

Abstract
Social networks are static illustrations of dynamic societies, within which
social interactions are constantly changing. Fundamental sources of
variation include ranging behaviour and temporal demographic changes.
Spatiotemporal dynamics can favour or limit opportunities for individuals
to interact, and then a network may not essentially represent social
processes. We examined whether a social network can embed such nonsocial
effects in its topology, whereby emerging modules depict spatially or
temporally segregated individuals. To this end, we applied a combination of
spatial, temporal and demographic analyses to a long-term study of the
association patterns of Guiana dolphins, Sotalia guianensis. We found that
association patterns are organized into a modular social network. Space use
was unlikely to reflect these modules, since dolphins' ranging behaviour
clearly overlapped. However, a temporal demographic turnover, caused by the
exit/entrance of individuals (most likely emigration/immigration), defined
three modules of associations occurring at different times. Although this
factor could mask real social processes, we identified the temporal scale
that allowed us to account for these demographic effects. By looking within
this turnover period (32 months), we assessed fission–fusion dynamics of
the poorly known social organization of Guiana dolphins. We highlight that
spatiotemporal dynamics can strongly influence the structure of social
networks. Our findings show that hypothetical social units can emerge due
to the temporal opportunities for individuals to interact. Therefore, a
thorough search for a satisfactory spatiotemporal scale that removes such
nonsocial noise is critical when analysing a social system.


For pdf requests, please contact me at m.cantor at ymail.com

Best regards,

Mauricio Cantor
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